Fife family claim dad with dementia ate raw bacon after no food for 20 hours

The Care Inspectorate is investigating a complaint from a Fife family which claimed their dad, who has dementia, was left without food or medication for 20 hours.

By Darren Gibb
Thursday, 9th September 2021, 5:00 am

Donald Cockburn, an RAF veteran, fell ill after eating raw bacon.

His daughter, Clare, also claims he only got a five-minute visit.

The incident happened late last month, and the family wants answers.

Donald and Clare Cockburn. Pic: Fife Photo Agency.

Clare said she only realised her dad had eaten the raw bacon when he fell ill during a trip to the supermarket

She said: "A home carer visited dad at 12pm on Sunday, gave him his medication, and made him his lunch which was the last meal that he had that day.”Mr Cockburn had a further visit in the evening which was recorded on his information sheet as lasting five minutes.

Added Clare: “The carer's times are logged so I know that they were only there for five minutes which is barely enough time to do paperwork let alone care for my dad. They are supposed to stay for 30 minutes.”She said his pill dispenser was left untouched.

After Mr Cockburn, from Thornton, fell ill while at the shops, she set about seeking answers.

She said she contacted the care co-ordinator “several times” but felt she was brushed off.

After complaining to the Home Care Service, Clare said she was contacted by a team leader.

“They basically tried to brush it all under the rug,” she said. “They said to me "how is it the carer's fault if your dad ate raw bacon?"

“They were very dismissive.”

Fife Health and Social Care Partnership said it was unable to comment on any specific individual circumstances.

Read More

Read More
Dutch memorial groups search for families of two Kirkcaldy airmen shot down in W...

It said its policy is too have a care at home package in place have a care plan, with packages differing depending on the person’s’ needs.

The time of an allocated visit can also vary , and the carer will carry out their duties within this time frame. If there are additional requirements at the time of the visit the carer will stay on longer to complete this.

There may also be occasions where the person may not want the carer for the full 30 minutes and ask them to leave, which they will do.

They can issue reminders to people to take their medicine, and some will do so there and then, or later at a suitable time - but carers cannot administer it.

Lynne Garvey, Head of Community Care Service, Fife Health and Social Care Partnership said: “The Fife Health and Social Care Partnership does not comment on individual circumstances.

"There are policies and procedures in place to investigate where there is a concern about the care provided and to take the appropriate action.”

A spokesperson for the Care Inspectorate confirmed a concern had been raised, and added: “We are considering all information given to us carefully, and will take appropriate action on assessment of this.

"If we uphold a complaint we will publish the outcome on our website."

Thank you for reading this article on our free-to-read website. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers.

Please consider purchasing a subscription to our print newspaper to help fund our trusted, fact-checked journalism.